Lisa Princic knows how to build a lasting membership program – and she’s here today to talk with us all about it!

Lisa Princic is the owner of Scaling Deep. Over the last 14 years, she has helped thousands of impact-driven business owners dive deep into their unique value and business models to build sustainable & profitable brands. 

Lisa helps coaches niche experts to become thought leaders and increase their impact and wealth with membership programs. A staunch believer in business simplicity and intention, she helps her clients accomplish their goals by focusing on what to do AND what to ignore. 

Lisa loves a challenge with adventure and can often be found skiing or biking in the coastal mountains of BC. 

In this episode, we cover:

  • Myths and truths about memberships
  • The pros and cons of pricing: high ticket vs. low ticket memberships
  • The benefits of small groups
  • The cost vs. the value of memberships
  • Creating evergreen content for memberships
  • Issues with how high profit, low revenue business models are marketed
  • And more!

Read the full transcript

Lisa Princic 0:00
They’re really fun. They’re really are the way of the future. And they really are up to your own creative mind about how we think people get more value.

Meg Casebolt 0:11
You’re listening to social slowdown a podcast for entrepreneurs and micro businesses looking for sustainable marketing strategies without being dependent on social media. Social media is a double edged sword. It’s a wonderful way to stay connected. But it also can feel like an addictive and even more complex, your audience might be right. But you’ve got to fight with algorithms, or maybe be seen by them. So whether you want to abandon social media altogether, you just want to take a month off, it’s possible to have a thriving business without being dependent on social media. This podcast is all about finding creative, sustainable ways to engage with your audience without reading to Lipson send to cold DMS, run ads be available 24/7 Let’s get started. I think it isn’t that far back. I think it’s probably like six or seven years, we’ve just been like circling around each other. So if anybody is listening to this, and going, Ooh, there’s a person that I really admire. I wonder if I’ll ever have the chance to talk to them just like start a podcast?

Lisa Princic 1:12
Yeah, for sure. It’s the best relationship builder.

Meg Casebolt 1:16
It is for extroverts. It’s a great relationship builder for extroverts who like to hear themselves talk, right?

Lisa Princic 1:22
Let’s just be clear, yes. For sure.

Meg Casebolt 1:26
There’s no one size fits all marketing strategy that works. But if you’d like to hear yourself talk, this is a good one.

Lisa Princic 1:32
Actually, no, you’re not you know, it’s not a lie. Like other so many things I won’t do happily and but getting on a call and you’re having conversation is like, my favorite thing to do. It’s just, I love sales calls. Like I just see all these things out there that are positioned against like sales calls, and this and that. And I’m like, all I want to do is hang out and chat with people.

Meg Casebolt 1:54
I don’t want to perform those are some of my favorite sales calls, or some of my favorite things to do, or discovery calls where I’m like, You know what, tell me about your business. And we’ll have a conversation. And if we’re a good fit, cool. And if we’re not like isn’t there a TED last a line where he’s like, cool. You’ve just met a cool person, right? Like,

Lisa Princic 2:10
yeah, it’s so easy to do. So. Yeah.

Meg Casebolt 2:14
And if you don’t go into it high pressure, like I need to convert this person by this date, then you just you just met a cool person.

Lisa Princic 2:20
Exactly. Exactly. And you never know where that’s gonna go. And you learn something, and I don’t know. And then someone learns about you. It’s just it is kind of the way the world always has worked before. Now not like not actually knowing the people we think we know.

Meg Casebolt 2:37
Before we felt like everyone had to fit into a funnel or a pipeline, and we could just have conversations and make introductions. One wild idea.

Lisa Princic 2:45
I know, I know. It’s interesting, because I do sometimes it’s like, I don’t post a lot. I have not been posting on social media, which I know we’ll be talking on this. I have this thing where I I’ve been noticing like, Oh, I know this person. And I’ve been there. I’ve been posting a lot. And it could be just like a Facebook usually profile like friend. And I’m like, they probably don’t even think about me. But I’m but they’re literally in my feed every week. And I just feel like I know what’s going on. And if I was sort of popped back into their life, they might be like, oh, yeah, I haven’t thought of you in a long time, because I haven’t posted in years. So it’s interesting to think about how much we feel like we know people and how well we know them compared to how we actually know them based on how much they are posting and how much we are not posting. It’s strange. And

Meg Casebolt 3:35
I think it’s not just like posting on social media. I think it’s any form of content creation, whether it is you know, posting on Facebook, like you said, or I opened people’s emails, and I feel like I know what’s happening in their lives. I have a friend who was just like, she sent an email. She was like, I just moved to Portugal. And I was like, Oh, cool. I completely missed that part of your life. But now I know this sort of inside scoop. But then also, YouTube’s podcasts. I have a lot of people who will get on a call with me and be like, I feel like I know you because it feels like you’re in my kitchen while I’m washing my dishes. And we’re just having a conversation that I’m like eavesdropping.

Lisa Princic 4:07
Totally. I know. So anyways, this is weird. It Yeah, it’s this weird kind of. I know there’s a word for it. Can you remember it’s like that word that you think you are parasocial? It’s parasocial. parasocial. Yes. Yeah. Which is you know different. But you know, we got I think about it, though. And I think about because I’m trying to push myself to get on social media, because I’ve been pretty much off of it. I don’t consume a lot of it. So for me, it has to be a bit performative. Like I have to actually just think about it as I’m performing just like writing even though I love writing I started writing in my journal when I was probably 10 or 11. So I that’s a medium that’s very comfortable with me like I like doing that. But being on camera, I don’t know I just feel like it’s just a you know, a form of journaling, but doing something really bite sized and tiny is just feels like it has to be like performance oriented like visually hooky and not so not my zone, right. So it’s interesting because I’m getting trying to get my head around that because I know it is important for me to just not be so like hidden and only having the people that are on my list see me that way, they’ve got to see different sides of me. And then I’ve got to be a little bit more visual and or maybe playful, maybe not, but just different forms of getting to know me and I Yeah, so I’m working on it. I’m working my way up to it.

Meg Casebolt 5:31
It’s funny to me, though, that we’re having this conversation on the socials lit on podcasts and you’re coming on, you’re like, Well, I haven’t been on social and I feel like I have to do more of it like. So talk to me about like, how you’ve been marketing? Actually, not even that. Let’s start with like, Haley. So what’s your business? Right.

Lisa Princic 5:49
Okay. So all right now, it’s a good point. I am a membership expert. So yeah, I’ve been in gotcha, became a life coach in 2000, like, eight. So I’ve been around for a long time. I wouldn’t say I went online right away. That was a little bit wild west and difficult back then. But like I Yeah, so I became and I obviously had some business experience before with small businesses in in sustainability. So I was really passionate about entrepreneurship. I just loved entrepreneurs, I thought they were all crazy, the ones I met, because they were all in this social, social sustainability and environmental sustainability space. And so they were doing some pretty out there things. And I also could not believe what they were doing in order to keep their businesses going. Like it was, you know, some crazy stories. And I was like, That’s so not me. But of course, then, the moment I say that, you know, I’m an Enneagram, eight, I like a challenge. I’m like, the seed gets planted, and I kind of work myself in my next how many years towards that thing that I was so intrigued by. So I narrow down eventually, I started just being really helped. Like more excited about working with businesses, I actually took Tara McMillan’s quiet power strategy training program, I became a strategist through her with her tools, which were amazing because they were just awesome tools I completely related to them. And then in the last few years, probably three ish years ago, I was really looking to narrow down so I became, you know, I started focusing on membership offers, partly because I thought the space needed a bit of a different conversation. And that’s kind of an interesting way to decide to niche is looking at, like, how can you disrupt a little bit like what bugs you about the way people are saying things and how they’re talking about things and, and how, if that’s bugging you, then it’s probably bugging a lot of people that you relate to well, so I started narrowing down a little bit and getting more focused, you know, I tested it a little bit to see is anyone interested in this topic, and then I, I started narrowing down and doing basically all the work I did previously with offer development and helping people create their business models more like really simply and sustainably from where they were. And like, you know, figuring out how are their offers work together and all that. And I just started doing that with memberships. So I’ve been focused on that. I have a program called the scaling deep society, which is renamed recently to just help member ship business owners grow and also to get started. So that’s, that’s what I do. Pretty much in a nutshell, what

Meg Casebolt 8:21
I love the idea of what is the industry that you want to disrupt should go find a way to sort of ingratiate yourself and change the thought leadership and the conversation around it? What were the things that you bumped up against, that didn’t feel good, that didn’t feel sustainable or ethical, or, you know, that were maybe a little bit predatory, in the membership space, putting words in your mouth? Because I have a feeling that we have similar ideas about this. But tell me kind of what bothered you that you wanted to fix?

Lisa Princic 8:52
Yeah, well, if it felt a little bit focused on number like number, so a few things that were difficult was sort of the high ticket high ticket, like everything has to be you have to be charging tons of money. And there was enough people, I think, in the bigger high ticket programs out there that aren’t getting their needs met, they’re just simply not able to either complete what they set out to do, because things get in the way, or they didn’t have the skill set. And then they’re locked in, right? Like you’re, you’re locked into a program. And you’ve been sold an item. So you’re not like every month thinking, Well, is this valuable to me? Am I getting something out of it? So the way things were being sold? I felt like the membership kind of fixes that because you’re not going to keep people forever. Because the membership is based on even if you do say okay, there is an upfront time commitment. Usually after that upfront time. Most membership owners are like just stay as long as you want. Or here’s a reduced rate or here’s an increased rate, whatever that next level is. So you still have to provide exceptional value to keep those people so that It really builds in that two way, I think solution that you can’t, you can only scam somebody once, right? I’m not saying everyone, but they could be overselling to people who aren’t ready for that growth. So I felt like they were an ethical way, but without reducing the ability to grow. Because you can have, you know, technically an unlimited number of people in a program, and you will know what you need to add, or when you need to cap it based on how much value people are getting, you know, if you all of a sudden have 200,000 people getting like paying high ticket for a membership and they weren’t getting what they got at 100, then you know that you’re either going to have to consider the pricing change, or you’re going to have to add way more support. So it’s just baked into the model. So that’s kind of an ethical reason. And I think also, the other really huge opportunity is just, we’re moving towards a subscription economy, like everything is becoming subscription. And I think more of us are offering membership, like programs anyway. So why not just call them that than saying that there’s something else when if you can join at any time, and if you are accessing content that’s remains the same month to month, then you’re not like and you don’t get kicked out? At some point. It’s kind of a membership. So when I just call it

Meg Casebolt 11:22
so yeah, I mean, right before you and I started recording, I was like, Oh, I kicked off a membership today. And you were like you did, and I’m like, yeah, it’s four months, you’re like, that’s not a member, you know, like it sort of is, because the ways that we can use these terms, we can define what membership is. And to an extent, I think you’re right, like there’s a, there can be an initial time commitment. And then there can be like a month to month after that, almost like you’re renting, you know, for a year or a six month lease, and then you can stick around month to month after that. Often, there’s like a community component that goes along with a membership, often there’s some sort of content that goes along with the membership. But what intrigues me about a membership model is the fact that it can be very customized to both the needs of the creator and the needs of the members. And it doesn’t have to be you know, this is a course and therefore, this is how it is presented. It can be very adjustable. So what are some of the like interesting ways that you’ve seen people set up their membership, so that way it fits their lifestyle and the needs of their audience.

Lisa Princic 12:24
Totally, I love that, like, that’s what I love about it the most is like, I know that that is what makes people scared of the model in the first place, because they think they have to just like stuff it full of everything. But really, you just have to focus on the main pillar of content or deliverable. So in my case, it’s actually coaching, right. So that’s what is the value is the is the calls, and the sort of live training discussions. So I think you need to figure out what that is for you. And you can have all of it in there eventually. But you don’t have to start with all of it. So it’s just about recognizing that some people like never show up to the calls. And they barely show up to the community. But they’re when I hear from them, they are like, Oh, I love the course, because I have a foundational course in there that’s basically helps you figure out all the decisions you need to make about your membership program. And even people who already have it, it helps them rethink things like oh, I can help like structure my content a bit better, like all these things, and some people will, that’s enough. That’s all they need. And others don’t want to go through that because they already have a membership program. And they’re working on marketing and sales and marketing. And so that’s the things they focus on. So it’s nice, because, again, you don’t have to start with everything. You just need to know well, what is that thing I’m going to do and some memberships are literally like we do a coaching call every week and that’s it. And there’s no content. That’s easiest for a lot of people who are extroverted, like cons are for constant conversations are coaches, consultants, less happy to do q&a calls. And then there’s people who just do mainly content. And then there’s other people or other types of memberships, especially some like hobby or interest, ones that are very community oriented. And that’s mostly what they have. But I mean, I in my case, like I like it when people ask questions in the community, but I don’t do the prompts. I don’t ask what their favorite hair color is or whatever, what would it would be if blah, blah, like I just am not that person and I don’t really think about these things. So I don’t do that. And that is okay, because they go in there and they share something of value or ask a really important question. And I think that’s where I what I want it to be full of, at least at the level I have of like 30 You know, plus people instead of you know if it was hundreds for I might try to draw people out a bit more but now they can show up in a call and I’ll get seen and heard.

Meg Casebolt 14:51
One of the things that I love that you said is like you don’t have to have the entire model and everything that’s going to be included and figured out the moment that you launch it you need to I’ve like the core idea of it. And then it can evolve over time. Like I’m thinking about two of my friends. Andrea Jones runs savvy social School, which is, you know, it has a course component where it’s like, here’s how to set up your LinkedIn. And here’s how to run a Facebook group. And it’s all social media. And that’s what she sells kind of on the front end. But the reason people stay is that she does coaching calls, where it’s like, what do I do with this with all these algorithm changes, and all the, you know, and, and so it’s like, they feel like they’re going to learn something, but the access to her and her team and their brains is what is the ongoing value. But then I also have my friend Lainey Lamar, who has a data driven membership, where every month she’s like, Okay, go, go learn how to read your email marketing metrics, that’s this month is email marketing, and you don’t need to have calls for it. Because it’s like, this is email marketing month, you have everything you need, you know,

Lisa Princic 15:52
right. And so it’s kind of this use case, right? Like, what are people? What are people know, like? What’s their expertise? What are they trying to teach? And then what do people need, and I love that, because that’s the value proposition of the membership is that everyone has a different like some asset and a community type of environment, people just want to hang out with people who are like having fun or asking questions about the things that they love. That’s very different. And you can be an observer, you don’t even have to participate. If you don’t have a question, but something like I’m really trying to figure out this problem. This is complex. I mean, that’s a great idea for membership, because then people will stay forever, because they’re still working it out. Right. So I think, in my case, there are a lot of things that people will figure out, but then you’re never going to get to the point where you are going to like, Well, you shouldn’t you probably will be fulfilled and satisfied at a certain point with members. But there’s always going to be things when you’re running a business that are going to come up. So the coaching aspect is something that is really important to offer so that they can literally come and imagine like coming on a 10 minute call and being really upset or worried about something and then having that really immediate, oh, hey, here’s what I did. Or, you know, I think that’s not that as bad as you think or whatever, right? Like that stuff is just invaluable. And I think that’s where the best I mean, in my opinion, the thing I need I need the most all the time is a bit of validation and a bit of encouragement to keep going and to not like throw everything out because it didn’t work the way I was hoping initially and staying the course and getting that validation, it makes some biggest difference in our confidence to move forward with our plan. And it’s only when we move forward with our plans that we start to see results or at least kind of like course correct a slightly. So I think that’s everything. And that’s where I think memberships especially, don’t have to be super low ticket either, especially if they are going to offer that kind of value.

Meg Casebolt 17:50
Yeah, I love what you said about course correcting, I feel like sometimes I will either show up in the memberships that I’m in or, you know, on the coaching calls that I’m leading and be like, this thing’s broken. And then the facilitator will be like, No, it’s fine. Don’t worry about it. And that just like that’s worth $200 a month, just have someone say like, No, don’t worry about it.

Lisa Princic 18:08
Actually, exactly. And not relevant to your

Meg Casebolt 18:11
business not relevant to your life, don’t worry about this error message, you can try this Have you thought about this, just the brainstorming of someone else is so powerful.

Lisa Princic 18:19
You’re right. Because if we don’t actually believe in what we’re doing, or we get into doubt, we stopped doing it, or we start switching to something else that we didn’t actually need to do, because the first thing had every chance of success had we just stayed the course. But we know we switched dramatically. And then now you know, we can’t even track the results because we literally are doing apples and oranges. Now instead of like different colored apples. You know, like we’re, we’re trying to change everything. And then we can’t see what was the variable that didn’t work. And then we just throw a bunch of stuff into the same. They have a whole bunch of variables and one of them doesn’t work or maybe two of them. So I think it’s that it’s that kind of like comfort we need we need to be heard and we need qualified people. So memberships a great way to access that you can I mean I have people in my membership who are like I don’t, they don’t show up at the calls, but they watch the recordings. And they love the recordings, they get the value out of those. So I think you don’t know how everyone’s using it. But you You likely have enough of the things and have to say that most people are getting something different out of it. And I’m not spending a lot of time on my membership. Like I I’d love to I want to do more but I don’t really need to you know, spend a few hours a week most weeks where unless I do some major project or major change, but it’s yeah, it’s really it’s really fun to run.

Meg Casebolt 19:42
So, you know, we’ve talked a little bit about what you’re teaching within it and how you’re helping people with it. I’d love to hear especially since you just said like, I haven’t done a ton of social and I’m still getting leads, like how are people finding and not just finding out about you but like making that decision about how to join you.

Lisa Princic 20:01
Yeah, okay, so I was throwing a lot of spaghetti at the wall about a year ago, I was messing around with trying to do launches and workshops, and I didn’t really know what I was doing. And I think I was just trying to, to, like fire more than before, because I probably suffered from not selling enough. And I think, see, that’s a lot of a problem with a lot of people I work with that. They don’t put their offer out in front of people more than once or something, right? It’s like, Oh, you didn’t join my live event. So therefore, I’m not going to put it out to my whole list. So I’m like, no, no, your whole list needs to keep seeing your signature offer over and over again, until they get off the list or buy, you know, or just, like, kind of look and be like, but not, I’m interested, but not right now. And then they’ll just not buy but stay on the list. So I didn’t really commit to that. So I decided to kind of level up and create an evergreen enrollment system. With like a webinar, which a really good webinar like I spent months creating this webinar, I got proper training on how to do it, it’s got a really it’s got I love it like I was, the more I did it, the more I was convinced that how amazing it was, like I just kept like feeding my best ideas into it. And that is sort of my funnel, right? So I have like a solid system for saying like, Hey, if you’re interested in this, here’s, like, what you’ll get and why it’s such a good deal. Like why I’m not charging $10,000 for this program. And, and but yet, you could get $10,000 of value in it by literally showing up and then and then launching and then growing like it’s it’s totally doable. So I think that that felt really good to level up like a confident launch. And I was really excited to do it evergreen, because I felt like the energy. So she went your list. isn’t that big? No, mine’s kind of growing a little bit now. And I’ll tell you about kind of how in a second, but it was sort of smaller at the time. And I realized that I had to keep putting, like I had to put my best out there and not feel like oh, no, people aren’t No, I don’t have enough people aren’t my event. Therefore I’m going to feel kind of crappy. And I’m not going to do a proper delivery. So the nice thing about evergreen is that you can just put your all into it, you can just be like I’m on, I’m going to share, like my best mood of my best way of saying things, it’s going to be clear. So therefore you’re not kind of like winging it. And you’re staying on kind of script instead of just like making it way too long, or way too relevant or getting off on a tangent. So that was my first step. Second, like I said, I haven’t felt like I’ve had a lot of traction in social media in my life, I think now I would start to make a difference. And of course, the video thing became everything. And I’m like, I don’t really know how to do short form content. I also have this thing about tick tock right now, like I don’t like I don’t never, I’ve never really consumed it ever. But now I just I just kind of feel like maybe it’s not the right thing for me to be on it. Because just the whole who knows where it’s coming from what they’re doing with it. I’m just doing that thing right now. I’m just taking that line.

Meg Casebolt 23:10
I think sometimes like as a grown up, you have to be like Well, that’s not a risk that I’m that’s a risk that I would have taken when I was a teenager to go all in on a platform that has some questionable choices at the base of it that may or may not be banned at any point in the future. But like now I’m a grown up and like, maybe I don’t want to take the risk. Yeah, and it’s

Lisa Princic 23:28
also just about taking a stand on something for me like I’m not actually worried about and you know, I think so anyways, so I have

Meg Casebolt 23:36
you started from a place of sustainability. And if there’s a platform that’s going to potentially go under, then it’s not sustainable and

Lisa Princic 23:44
maybe even think of it that way. So thanks for not investing,

Meg Casebolt 23:49
coming full circle here. This is the ADHD host going like let me just ping around to all the different things you said no, but I think there is something about that, that it not just tick tock specifically. But what you just said about like I was doing okay on social media and then they switched to being this shorter content, the video content and I had to change everything all over versus when you have an asset in your business like an evergreen webinar that you own, that you you control the delivery of that webinar, you know at what point in your sales cycle people are hitting it, you can do your list segmentation, when people come in, you can help figure out whether or not they’re ready for that before you throw them into that part of the funnel. Like there’s so much that’s in your control that allows you to guide the customer experience instead of well everyone just gets shoved into this thing because they came from this one platform that may or may not be a good lead for me.

Lisa Princic 24:42
Yeah, and that’s where I’ve really so I never I don’t know if I ever really got traction properly on Instagram and that’s partly why I decided not to do it so much and but I did do do ads so I did learn how to do ads years ago I decided to kind of test out as as a thing that I might offer and and maybe fought four or five, five years ago. So I did learn how to do them. And I think there are some really good trainings and how to do them. And I do have like an ad running that did has brought one out, you know, not doing a huge spend. I mean, I think it was $30 a day, which is lots for some people, not much for most people really out there who are actually running ads, and that has brought in good leads, because they have this great sales system. So then my confidence was, like, Okay, I, you know, I can do this, and I can see how it tracks and also just not having to be on like, No, I’m a strategic person, right? Like, I’m not every day, I want to kind of do something shiny and new, like, I love the Okay, plan, the strategy, you know, make the plan, develop the strategy, and then have it optimize, you know, like, that’s fun. For me, I have the same ad that I started in October that started doing really well in January. And that is like zero time. Yes, it’s a bit of money, but it doesn’t require me to be inspired or feeling like I have to look okay, you know, it just is very reliable, right? I mean, cost can change a little bit. But once you get something that kind of works. So I have that. And then I also have just been doing tons of audience sharing. And I’ve now you know, once you’re in a bundle, you’re in a lot of bundles, or once you’re in a summit, you get asked to speak another summits and, and so the audience sharing is probably brought me the biggest growth, it’s a bit hit or miss just like sometimes ads and just like probably reels it’s hit or miss sometimes on the connection to the product, or the amount of people like whatever the bundle is, like I’ve had bundles before that have had brought in nothing. I’ve had summits that have brought in nothing. I’ve had podcasts that have brought in like small podcasts that have brought in a few people that are really ready for it and need it. So it’s really also more about connecting to other people’s audiences. And it’s so low effort again, because I donate a free product or I do a presentation for a summit and I love doing those like I extrovert talking to a screen. I love training. So that’s fun for me. So I you know, I thrive at doing stuff. And I like that it actually makes me feel like I’m doing good work, you know, because I really get into the content that I’m teaching during the training. So it’s exciting for me. So that’s how I do it because I liked doing that. And I prefer to do that more than being on the socials. But I still feel like now I’m getting a phase where like, I had to put up a nine grid today because I had such ancient old stuff that wasn’t that relevant to me that I thought I least need to get that up. So because I was kind of getting new followers and new followers, I’m like, Oh my God, they’re probably like, what are you and who are you and this is like, your your profiles like pretty lame. So at least I got the foundation there. Because it it might be time to level up. But you have to have the time you have to have the excitement for it. Or you have to come up with the this is really important experiment to run. And that’s where I’m at right now I’m out that this is an important experiment to run. And that’s why and I also feel like I can probably just whip up a reel because I can do things impromptu pretty easily. The short part scares me a bit, but I could probably once I started doing it, find it easy, I just have this inertia around it, but I will get over it.

Meg Casebolt 28:18
I want to go back for a minute to what you were saying about the energy that goes into ads, and then the the investment versus the outcomes. I think a lot of times when people think about running Facebook ads, they feel like or Instagram ads, whatever same platform meta ads, they feel like it has to be this big thing that you’re running, you know 1000s of dollars 10s of 1000s of dollars. You’re testing new audiences, you’re testing new messaging, you’re you have to have a self liquidating Offer Funnel where it’s $27 and then a $37. upsell and then it’s $77 one time offer like, it’s like the infrastructure of ads can feel oppressive and can feel so overly structured, that it’s overwhelming. But what you just said about like, $30 a day could feel like a lot like 1000 bucks a month, right? Or it could feel like

Lisa Princic 29:10
it does feel like a pinch. Right?

Meg Casebolt 29:13
Right. If you have no sales, that’s $1,000 a month you’re flushing down the drain. Yeah, but what you said when you said it is I started running them and it works because I have an evergreen sales system.

Lisa Princic 29:25
Yeah, like I put them in my sales system right away and and my bundle people are summit people, I actually stick them in my system and I know that they didn’t ask for it. And yes, my first initial sales sequence is like 15 days, it’s a lot of emails, right? But I it’s kind of like my, that’s what I’m here to sell and people should my content is good. The emails are really, really like in depth. So they’re actually going to be interesting to people or they’re just not interested and, and even you know so so I’m like well That’s what I sell. And this is what I do. And so I actually I don’t stick them all in immediately I wait, but then I stick them in because that’s my system. And I kind of decided to get a bit fiercer with that instead of being like, oh, you know, I shouldn’t I just And yeah, so in one of my, you know, recent bundles, I had like, like, the initial group of people who came in for people ended up on my membership, and they’re excited to be there. And so I if I hadn’t had done that, if I’d never really put them in, I didn’t have I don’t have a live plan a live launch plan right now, I’m going to make one I think, but I don’t really have one and I had bad experiences. In the past doing it, I wasn’t quite ready for a lot, you know, for a lot of reasons. And I don’t have a big team. Like I’m, I’m like the high profit low, low, like lower revenue person, like, that’s my mentality, I’d much rather have a smaller, profitable business than a giant, huge expense businesses, the business, that’s just my, my preference, I’d be huge if, well, semi huge if it was really profitable, and really easy. But yeah, and then I could give back tons, because I would probably just give back tons. But I think it’s more that I just need to go with what I think I can manage without being too stressed out. And so I haven’t done a live launch. So I need to actually commit to that system, like you kind of got to commit to what you decide to commit to. And I think that’s part of our problem in business is that we, we do this, like, Oh, I’m gonna do this thing. And then we kind of like, partially do it, right. So like, you can just run a summit once and think, oh, that that sucked. It’s like, you kind of have to be committed to it. You have to do it every year, at least to figure it out and get it better and more reputable and all that stuff, right. So I think that’s where I’ve committed to the things I’m committed to you. And ads is the same thing. You kind of commit.

Meg Casebolt 31:45
Yeah, and you test and you pivot, and you try new things. I want to go back to what you said about high profit, low revenue. I think we don’t talk about this enough in online business. But I think especially coming off this conversation about ads and messaging around ads and how they work. There are a lot of people out there running ads that are like, I have the 7.9 figure business, you know, like or, like, I grew my business to 12 figures in 12 months, and like they throw these numbers around without giving the context that you just gave of high profit, low revenue, where it’s like, you can have a $10 million business and have $9 million in expenses. Yeah. And you have only 10% That’s profit, you know. So it’s like, we have all of these conversion rates that people are playing around with and these big numbers, and you have to scale and you have to grow and like but if if it’s really stressful, because you have 20 people on your team, so that way, you can hit your $10 million revenue number. And you can hit that same profit with two people on your team or zero people on your team and work less because you have things automated, like why why why would just for your?

Lisa Princic 33:06
I think I think yeah,

Meg Casebolt 33:08
I’m sorry, listener, I got really squeaky there that may have hurt your ears?

Lisa Princic 33:12
Well, okay, so I do think it’s a bit of ego. And I think it’s also and this is the other thing that kind of bugs me a little bit about, the way we perceive value is that it’s kind of like, okay, people keep selling things that they have done personally, even though they’re not an expert in that thing, which is like saying, I did it, therefore you can do it, because I’m going to teach you how I did it. But they don’t have a skill set and doing that like so as a business strategist, or you know, as an SEO expert, like you can work with companies that are massive, like because we know how to work on the things that we know how to do best. So I don’t have to be a seven figure membership business owner to help. Well, maybe what I help seven figure businesses help a six figure business. Oh, six, it feels good to help or even help a six figure business owner, do you see what I mean? Like, I mean, you don’t have to be having done everything perfectly yourself to help someone do the thing. Like you have to know how to do your skill set, which is it’s like it’s like a coach like a life coach can coach people who are 100 million times more successful than them, but they have the skill set. And we accept for I think a lot of people are out there saying, Well, I that’s the bragging rights, like I did it. And unfortunately, it works. And this is the challenge is like we only tend to trust people who have walked this path before us. Even though people can be perfectly qualified to help us walk the path, even if they haven’t chosen to take that path. That’s where it’s tough. And we have to work on our own success stories. And then we have to explain why there’s why we’re successful. But it doesn’t all have to be about numbers. But that but numbers also do work except for the ones that are just so cheesy and icky. And then we’re not going to talk anyway. So it’s like how do we how do we say it in a way that doesn’t make people feel crappy for not

Meg Casebolt 34:56
being there? Yeah. And I think coming back to what you said Both about bragging rights. And at the beginning, when you were talking about the things that bothered you in the industry of the high expense high, you know, high ticket programs that may or may not get results. I think that there are some bragging rights around like I sell a $10,000 mastermind. But one of the things that I like about the way that you approach things is like not what’s the cost of the membership? What’s the value of the membership? Because depending on how you structure it, you can have like I think about, Liz Wilcox has an incredibly valuable membership for $9 a month. Yeah. And she has almost like 10,000 members in it, because it’s only $9 a month. And it doesn’t take a ton of her time, because it’s only $9 a month. So she’s sending two emails a month, but are two emails a week? Like, it doesn’t need to be a high ticket, high demand structure in order for it to be highly profitable when and highly satisfying.

Lisa Princic 35:59
Fill out Yeah, and so she’s did it in a way that was very min minimum, like she had her this is what I deliver. And I mean, I’m not in it. But I mean, I can imagine she probably as she gets larger as adding more things to it because she can because the profit margin is there. But you can’t really, you can’t not you can’t come out with a $9 membership and coaching calls every week. Because you know what you’re gonna get what 20 members to start maybe, maybe 50, depending on your list, maybe 100? And could you really afford to do that for $900 a month? Like it’s like you can afford it but is it? Is it really the right

Meg Casebolt 36:35
model. So sustainable become paintable.

Lisa Princic 36:39
And you need to you need to price it for what the value is. Otherwise, people are either not going to use it or they’re not going to believe it’s good enough, like pricing is kind of a signal, right? So I think was something like that if you are just going to give out content and templates and things. And people need them and never not need them. And then price is a no brainer price point, then great. But I think two people are jumping on that sort of bandwagon, and they’re trying to get 10,000 people and then give all the bells and whistles but then at some point, people are gonna still look at their like expense sheet and go, Why am I paying for this, I haven’t logged in in five months. And I just don’t know that that low ticket thing. She’s a great example. But there’s so many people who are jumping on the bandwagon. And I don’t know that they’re really doing anything, but counting on the fact that people are just going to forget about it. And I think that’s not necessarily the right way to run a business either.

Meg Casebolt 37:29
Right? There definitely has to be there are definitely like low cost, low touch offers out there that are incredibly valuable. And some that are garbage. Like just because of low cost doesn’t mean that it’s easy to run. And I think one of the things and you you started to touch on this, which I love is like when you have a membership, when you have evergreen enrollment, you not only have to continue to build the value into the program for your existing members. But with Evergreen enrollment, you have to be constantly being found by new people in order to put them into that. Whereas in launch model or a low tide, or you know, low volume, you only need one new person a month, you don’t need to necessarily have the visibility, you don’t need to have new people coming in all the time. So you were talking about with your email list growth, like you’re using some social media, some social ads, you’ve got these audience sharing opportunities, like bundles and summits which I love that approach. But what would you say to people who don’t have a big email list to start with? And they’re thinking about starting a membership?

Lisa Princic 38:35
Don’t undercharge? Yeah, because I think a lot, I think that I mean, my membership sort of ranges in that sort of 150 to $200 per month amount depending on when you sign up and all that. But I would say that if I would have probably had the same amount of members had I charge like $50. If I would charge like 200 and something I feel like or more. I feel like there’s a certain amount of people you will can convert and I got this number with on a call in a mastermind with a launch person is a launch specialist. She works with huge companies like doing huge launches, all kinds, right? And she said yeah, 1% is generally the amount of people that you want to convert in your audience. And that’s like a good number. And I’m like, Oh, I love that. And now I use that to apply. Like, if you have 1000 people on your list, you’re probably going to get like 10 people and yes, for immediately depending on the offer, like obviously there’s like how much have you hit the nail on the head? How hooky is it? What’s the timing, there’s all that how warm is your list, etc. But think about that. So if you have 1000 people on your list or even 500 and you get 1% You probably don’t want to charge a low ticket. Now you probably want to deliver higher value to the to a smaller number of people because that’s who you probably get. And that’s going to be more Sustainable, then high getting the same amount of people at a way lower costs. So you want to make sure that you’re kind of thinking about that instead of just going, Oh, if I do it super cheap, everyone will want to join. That’s not necessarily the case, mean $9 is different than, say 50. But still, you know, you could be charging, you could be thinking you need to charge $50, for something that’s worth 250.

Meg Casebolt 40:22
Yeah, I one of the things that I say to people a lot is like, with small groups comes intimacy. It’s not that small means new or young or bad, it means that you have the potential to develop deeper relationships there. And here, we come back to scaling deeper, right, your brand like this is, you have the opportunity to go wide or to go deep. And that’s a choice that you can make is you can have a $9 offer, you can have a $900 a month offer, you can be somewhere in the middle there. But knowing how deep you want to go versus how wide and making that decision, when you’re setting your pricing when you’re setting your structure when you’re figuring out what the deliverables are not expecting to grow infinitely forever, you know, at that same exponential hockey stick curve space like and that’s. And that’s what the experts of the Facebook ads are telling you is like, well, you can just get new people all the time and sell them in the membership. And they’ll all stay. And that’s not reality, you know, so make sure that you’re building your systems to be sustainable for your energy, for your industry, for your churn and for what your members need from you.

Lisa Princic 41:35
I love that you just said that perfectly like that. I’ll just record that.

Meg Casebolt 41:40
And recording. Yeah, it’s all yours.

Lisa Princic 41:43
No, I’m saying that’s perfectly said. And it is so true. Because everything I know that I am somebody who is not really inclined to grow a volume business. Like it’s not my not I said I would do it if it was easy. And if it was like working, but I wouldn’t go out to do that. So I know that I have to kind of give a rich experience. And I know I can’t under charge for that. If you said I’m you know, I’m limited. I was telling you this earlier, like I have a next level program that will look at people’s content. And I’ll look at so it’s like within my membership. There’s a limit to what I’ll do, like I’ll answer any questions, but I won’t necessarily go off the platform and go on to their sales page and start reading their content and giving them feedback. That’s not what is included in mine. There’s coaching calls, there’s all kinds of things. So it’s like you got to have your boundaries, and your containers around the value and what to expect. And a lot of people will be like, well, well, how much personalization will I actually get and I just like say, well, here’s what you get. But then there’s also this option, because I do have strategy sessions that I offer at a discount to my membership and about one quarter than buy. Because they really like want that one hour. Like let’s get to know my issue like you now you know my business, let’s talk about the issue in depth. And I love doing those because I know even more about them in the membership. And I can get context. When I answer questions. It’s, you know, easy. And it’s like a really great system. So instead of kind of going like, oh, I’ll just keep giving and giving and giving for nothing. I respect my own boundaries around like, I love this. But I can’t I can’t give you this in this, like you’re asking me a really complicated question. I can’t analyze that without asking you like 20 questions for so you should consider a strategy call or whatever, right? So I think we need to kind of just respect how do we want to work I love working with people in depth. How do we encourage that? And how do we build a membership around that or whether or not the membership includes that or doesn’t price it accordingly? And then build a boundary around it and never say no, I don’t do that. Unless you really don’t want to do that. Just be like, Oh, here’s another way to get this value.

Meg Casebolt 43:45
Yeah, I love that. Because well, two things that you said the first is like it’s okay to choose low volume. Total low volume is not bad. It’s not, you know, I think about memory vault is a software that a lot of us use in this, this kind of small business online space. And they came out and said, like, we don’t want to grow infinitely, it’s a cap on our servers, it’s a cap on our customer service, like software as a service should be infinitely scalable, but you can where the sustainability of what the top cost that it takes on your team and on your resources exceeds the value of being able to say that you are just growing infinitely.

Lisa Princic 44:27
So I hadn’t heard that. That’s amazing.

Meg Casebolt 44:30
Oh, I can put more information about it in the show notes too. People are curious about that. At some point. I’ll have Aaron on to talk about that decision too. Because like, that’s just not something you hear software companies doing.

Lisa Princic 44:40
No, I know, right? And it sounds out because you’re also standing for something that is a little bit different. And I think that’s where we can disrupt a little bit by just putting out a slightly different message than everyone else is saying and it doesn’t even have to be radical. It just has to be. Here’s the thought. Imagine growing membership low volume Think about putting that out. So we’re, yeah, yeah,

Meg Casebolt 45:03
let’s, this is not my topic to talk about. But you should do a podcast episode about the choice to be small, the choice to be intimate, and that what might be really interesting, let’s just play with this a little bit as you say, like, I have a cap of 50 people in my membership, once I hit that, I’m gonna have a waitlist when people leave, then you can roll yourself into it. And if you leave, then you have to go back to the end of the waitlist, like something like that creates both supply and demand in an economic setting. But also it creates scarcity in a way that isn’t like time bound or like that you’re creating a false scarcity of like, well, I just said that I was only gonna look at a few people in but I’ll totally let in 100 totally authentic. It’s ethical. But it also feels prestigious, it feels like you’re getting access to you in a different way. And you could even do this, like, my membership is going to be open to the public. But I will invite people to a higher tier or like you said, you have the option to upsell, if you want to have that more access. If you want to have deeper conversations, there can be different tiers that you’re involved in. So it doesn’t have to be, you know, I think sometimes people think memberships have to be these, like one size fits all models. But really, you can customize them hierarchically, you can customize them by you know, segmentation, you can say you have to be in the low tier of the membership for six months or a year, and then you can upgrade once you’ve gone through this core. You know, like, there’s so much that can be

Lisa Princic 46:33
cheese. Yeah, yeah. No, it’s great. That’s a great ideal

Meg Casebolt 46:38
on an existing container. Yeah, I think that’s how brilliant,

Lisa Princic 46:43
it is brilliant. They’re really fun. They’re really are the way of the future. And they really are up to your own, like creative mind about how we think people get more value, like how do people how will they grow even further? And how do we want to operate? And then we get to match that together, we have a really unique program. And the thing about memberships is this so interesting is that they actually really are, they’re a long game, okay, so they, once these might start a little slow, and like, Oh, I could be selling this as a high ticket program and earning way more, but just wait a few years. When you start to gain momentum, the momentum is real, like it really is like, Oh, I’ve added like, five more or 10 more people on average per month and, and then you actually are not really at your real isn’t you’re not putting in that much more work. So it is actually really the Dream Program. They just, you need to kind of figure it out a little bit at the beginning and take that time to figure it out. But then there is a payoff, right? Like, it does pay off because it does feed itself, right. The Evolution part is big, you might end up with a huge community of people who just engage all the time, even though that wasn’t your intention. So that’s where you have to really like have an open mind and stick it out.

Meg Casebolt 47:56
Yeah, I love that. Okay, so Lisa, if people want to find out more about you find out about the scaling deeper program, like what’s the best way to catch up with you? Apparently not tick tock,

Lisa Princic 48:08
not tick tock just scaling diva calm, and you can go to forward slash freebie. That’s how you get into my training. And it’ll share with all the like the myths out there about memberships, some of the things we talked about today and more. And we’re just checking my website. And I don’t know if I should even send you to Instagram, maybe by then I’ll be doing more. But I have a really great nine grid that I spent a lot of time on, and writing all the text with each one. So that’s another way to find out more about me and what I do and what I believe in.

Meg Casebolt 48:37
It’s never a bad thing to send people to social. It’s just kind of nice to to have other options for those of us who are not quite so socially inclined. So thank you, Lisa, so much for being here with me today. I love this conversation, and I really appreciate you.

Lisa Princic 48:51
You’re so welcome. Thanks for having me.

Meg Casebolt 48:55
Thank you so much for listening to the social slowdown podcast. If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe or come on over to social and sign up for our email list so you never miss an episode. We’d also love if you could write a review to help other small business owners find the show you can head over to social Or grab that link in our show notes for easy access. We’ll be back soon with more tips to help you market your business without being beholden to social media Talk to you then

Please forgive any typos or errors, as this transcript was automatically generated by

sustainable memberships with lisa princic podcast episode pinterest pin